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Lewis Hamilton clinches 2017 Japanese F1 GP as Vettel retires early

Lewis Hamilton clinches 2017 Japanese F1 GP as Vettel retires early

Snapshot: It was yet another brilliant race for young Max Verstappen who finished second in his Red Bull with a gap of just 1.2s, post his win in the previous race.

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It seems like there’s no stopping Lewis Hamilton now, who won a thrilling race at the Sunday’s 2017 Formula 1 Japanese Grand Prix. The Suzuka round of the F1 saw the Mercedes driver extend his championship lead by 59 points now over the Ferrari driver Sebastian Vettel, who retired early in the race due to a technical snag in the F1 car.

This means with four races to go and about 100 points to gain, Vettel has to win each and every race, with Hamilton either retiring in a couple of races or finishing beneath fourth spot. This is the only way Vettel can win his 5th championship. Else, the Briton would equal the record with the German of four championships.

Nevertheless, it was yet another brilliant race for young Max Verstappen who finished second in his Red Bull with a gap of just 1.2s, post his win at the previous race. His team mate Daniel Ricciardo took the third spot, completing the podium of the Japanese GP. This is Sebastian Vettel’s second retirement in three races.

Lewis Hamilton said in a press conference - “Hi, everyone. We’ve had such a great crowd here this weekend. In Japan they always look after us so well here, so very, very grateful for that, and the support has been immense. So, it’s great to have a beautiful day here, it’s probably the first time I’ve really seen the sea from here. The track was fantastic; the team did an incredible job. Max drove an outstanding race and honestly it wasn’t an easy one for us at all.”

Hamilton’s team mate in Mercedes, Valterri Bottas attacked Ricciardo fiercely for the podium finish, but failed by nine-tenths of a second to take home the fourth spot. While it was yet another disastrous day for the Italian manufacturer, Kimi Raikkonen turned out to be a saving grace with a fifth place finish. Both Bottas and Kimi lost five grid places for gearbox changes.

Esteban Ocon lost his hard-won third place after the Ericsson VSC, dropping behind Ricciardo and Bottas to finish sixth of his Force India team, ahead of his team mate Sergio Perez, who asked for but was refused permission to challenge him for sixth place. Haas also had a great day after Kevin Magnussen and Romain Grosjean gave the American team eighth and ninth places and move them a point ahead of Renault in seventh overall.

Felipe Massa held on for the final point by eight-tenths from the aggressive Alonso, in his Williams, hence finishing the top 10 of the 2017 Japanese GP. But this battle between him and Alonso costed Alonso two penalty points on his Super License as he has been reprimanded by Suzuka stewards for not adhering to blue-flag rules correctly.

Alonso didn’t let the leader Lewis Hamilton pass him on the lap 51 and officials deemed that he did not allow him to pass at the earliest opportunity as required by the rules. Alonso was shown a solid blue indicator light on his dash and waved blue flags. He also had received a flashing blue light to inform him that race leader Lewis Hamilton was closing on him for over a lap before. Alonso let Hamilton pass during lap 52. It seems like Alonso’s problems are never ending.

You can check the result from the previous race here!

Race Result:

POS

DRIVER

CAR

TIME/RETIRED

PTS

1

Lewis Hamilton

MERCEDES

1:27:31.194

25

2

Max Verstappen

RED BULL RACING TAG HEUER

+1.211s

18

3

Daniel Ricciardo

RED BULL RACING TAG HEUER

+9.679s

15

4

Valtteri Bottas

MERCEDES

+10.580s

12

5

Kimi Räikkönen

FERRARI

+32.622s

10

6

Esteban Ocon

FORCE INDIA MERCEDES

+67.788s

8

7

Sergio Perez

FORCE INDIA MERCEDES

+71.424s

6

8

Kevin Magnussen

HAAS FERRARI

+88.953s

4

9

Romain Grosjean

HAAS FERRARI

+89.883s

2

10

Felipe Massa

WILLIAMS MERCEDES

+1 lap

1

11

Fernando Alonso

MCLAREN HONDA

+1 lap

0

12

Jolyon Palmer

RENAULT

+1 lap

0

13

Pierre Gasly

TORO ROSSO

+1 lap

0

14

Stoffel Vandoorne

MCLAREN HONDA

+1 lap

0

15

Pascal Wehrlein

SAUBER FERRARI

+2 laps

0

NC

Lance Stroll

WILLIAMS MERCEDES

DNF

0

NC

Nico Hulkenberg

RENAULT

DNF

0

NC

Marcus Ericsson

SAUBER FERRARI

DNF

0

NC

Sebastian Vettel

FERRARI

DNF

0

NC

Carlos Sainz

TORO ROSSO

DNF

0

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